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Ado Birk (also known as Aadu Birk, Aado Birk or Avdei Birk; 14 November 1883 – 2 February 1942), was the Estonian Prime Minister for three days, from July 28, 1920 to July 30, 1920.

Biography

Ado Birk was born in Tarvastu Parish, Viljandi County, Estonia. He graduated from the Theological (Orthodox) Seminary in Riga, studied in the Saint Petersburg (Orthodox) Theological Academy, and in the law departments of the Tartu (1907–1908), Saint Petersburg (1908–1911) and Leipzig (1911) universities.

Between 1911–1912 he was Head of the Tallinn Statistical Bureau. From 1912–1917 he worked as a solicitor to barrister Jaan Poska.

In 1917 he was made provisional secretary of the Estonian Province Assembly (Eesti Maanõukogu), and in 1918 was made representative of Estonia in Helsinki,Finland. From 1918 to 1919 he was Chairman of Estonian Province Assembly and chairman of General Committee of Elections to the Constituent Assembly (Asutav Kogu). From 1919 to 1920 he was vice chairman of Constituent Assembly and Minister of Foreign Affairs, again in 1920 and in 1925. He was prime minister for three days from July 28, 1920 to July 30, 1920. Between 1917–1924, Birk was also chairman of the Tallinn Voluntary Society of Firemen, in 1919–1922 chairman of the All-Estonian Union of Firemen.

From 1922 to 1926 he was Envoy of Estonia in the Soviet Union. As an Envoy to the Soviet Union, he had in the beginning of 1926 a conflict with the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and refused to return after his demotion. In summer of 1926, he fell victim to the provocation of the Soviet secret service GPU, and was imprisoned in Russia, but was soon released and returned to Estonia in 1927. He was accused of forwarding secret information to the USSR and was in pretrial imprisonment, in November 1927 was acquitted by the Tallinn-Haapsalu Peace Council (Estonian: Rahukogu).

In the second half of 1920s and in the 1930s, he became active in the Estonian Apostolic Orthodox Church (EAOC), and in 1939–1940 was the Ecumenical Secretary of the EAOC whilst serving as a businessman in Tallinn.

With the onset of the Second World War, he was arrested by the NKVD (People's Commissariat of Internal Affairs, (the Soviet secret police) and on June 14, 1941, was in the Sosva prison camp, and was sentenced to death but died before the execution at Sosva, Sverdlovsk oblast, Russia (see Gulag))

References

Preceded by
Jaan Tõnisson
Prime Minister of Estonia
July 28, 1920–July 30, 1920
Succeeded by
Jaan Tõnisson
Preceded by
Ants Piip
Minister of Foreign Affairs
1919 – 1920
Succeeded by
Kaarel Robert Pusta
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